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Pipefish Fossil Mass Mortality Layer - New Locality - California

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Pipefish Fossil Mass Mortality Layer - New Locality - California

Availability: Out of stock

Syngnathus avus (Jordan & Gilbert, 1919)
Extinct Marine Pipefish

Late Monterey Formation
Late Miocene Age : 8 - 5 million years ago

Santa Barbara County, California, USA

Pipefish (large) : 7.20 in. longest length
Pipefish (infant) : 4.12 in.
Slab : 8.10 x 7.25 in.

1 inch = 2.54 cm

This plate if from a NEW LOCALITY we discovered just this year in May of 2016. These are just a few of the offerings we will be making from this new site as most specimens are still being prepared as our excavations continue.

There are 4 fish on this plate!

What makes this new locality for these pipefish fossils, are the prevalence of infant pipefish surrounding the adult males. Were the fish brooding and expelled when buried, or was this a pipefish nursery?

Hopefully more of these questions are answered as we continue to discover more plates as this! A noticeable difference is the coloration of the shale and beautiful black dendrites covering many of the slabs as well as the preservation of the fish in the thin layers of chert.


Pipefish are typically a very rare fossil to find specimens of, as only less than a handful of known localities are known in the world to find this elusive fossil. These fish are the ancestor to the modern day Seahorse!